Startup name: Koge Vitamins
Co-founders: Alex Hyssen, Andrew Lenjosek
Funding: $500,000 committed of $850,000
When Andrew Lenjosek first got into the finance and startup game, he was working long hours, eating take-out three times a day and running his health into the ground. He resolved to take better care of his body by doing more exercise and taking vitamins.
But on stage at Extreme Startups Demo Day, the former banker-turned-entrepreneur said he had walked into a health store and felt totally overwhelmed when he saw the range of choice available and sheer number of vitamins on the shelves.
Hence Lenjosek discovered a problem, and like any entrepreneur, set out to solve it.
Koge Vitamins is a vertically integrated company with access to its own manufacturer, enabling them to cut out middlemen and sell vitamins online for much cheaper than can be found in stores. Having a relationship to a manufacturer means vitamins can also be sourced much faster than what’s the practice among Koge’s competitors, Lenjosek said.
“We’re certainly not the first vitamin company in this space,” he said. “But we are the first company to take a data-driven approach to understanding our customer and giving them personalized nutrition recommendations.”
To go along with the personalization line, Koge also provides an online assessment tool for potential customers, helping them pick out vitamins they need for their nutritional deficiencies.
In the future, it aims to build a schedule to remind customers to take their vitamins, and hopes to personalize blends so that customers will never buy anything they don’t need. So far, Koge has attracted 2,500 customers, bringing in about $120,000 in revenue.
The startup also just signed a strategic partnership with Loblaws Companies Ltd., aiming to grow its distribution in Canada.
And with a particularly flourishing show of salesmanship, Lenjosek ended his talk by reminding Extreme Startups Demo Day attendees that Koge purchases are 50 per cent off until Sunday.
Koge is seeking $850,000 in funding, with $500,000 already lined up.